Oil prices declined despite Egypt riots – Weekly recap Jan 31-4 Feb

Crude oil price continued to fall during the end of the week, despite the price hike it gained during the beginning of the week, mainly related to the turmoil in Egypt.

Here is a weekly recap for January 31 to February 4th on the main changes in crude oil price, recapping the highlights on petroleum stocks, production and consumption in the US, and the main news regarding the Egyptian riots and its effect on crude oil price:

Crude oil price

The current news from Egypt show that the riots continue and there are still calls for President Hosni Mubarak to step down of his presidency effective imminently; nonetheless it seems that the effect of the ongoing Egyptian protests on crude oil price has subsided for now, as the price probably already incorporated the rise in the uncertainty in the Middle East  (for more on the Egyptian turmoil and its effect on crude oil price, see here).

Let’s check how crude oil prices did this week:

table crude oil price - 31 January to 4 February* This figure is calculated based on the percent change from the price at the beginning of the week compare to the price at the end of the week

Crude oil price (WTI spot) weekly average of 90.19$/b rose by 4.7% compare to last week’s average price of 86.11$/b. On average, crude oil price (WTI) daily change was 0.22%, however its price declined by 2.15% from beginning to end of the week.

The WTI crude oil price ranged between 90.99 $/b and 89.03 $/b – a range of 1.96$/b, which is lower than last week’s range.

NYMEX Futures Price (future for March) much like WTI spot price, fell by 3.43% from beginning to end of the week as it settled on 89.03$/ on Friday – this week’s low.

These figures show crude oil prices inclined sharply only to fall during the end of the week, probably related to the news from the Middle East.

Europe Brent spot price inclined by 0.67% from beginning to end of the week, and its average weekly price was 100.47$/b which is 4% above last week’s average.

The gap between the Brent and WTI spot prices was on Friday 10.6$/b – the lowest gap all week. This news on Egypt might have a stronger effect on Brent oil than WTI oil. As the upcoming week will progress, we will see if there is a trend in closing the gap between the two spot prices.

Crude oil charts

The following charts show the changes of WTI spot price, NYMEX Futures Prices (future for February) and Europe Brent spot price:

Crude oil charts - 31 January to 4 February

The chart above shows that while Brent price has no apparent trend (upward or downward) the WTI spot and future prices show a clear downward trend from the middle of the week.

The final graph shows crude oil price (WTI spot, WTI future, Brent spot) daily percent change for this passing week:

Crude oil charts - percent change 31 January to 4 FebruaryPetroleum Stocks –highlights:

In my recent review on last week’s EIA report petroleum stocks, consumption and production in the US, showed that oil stocks have increased for the fourth straight week, this time by 0.3%, an increase of nearly 5.5 million barrels of crude oil.

The average US production (million of barrels a day) was 5.417 on a four week average, lower than last week by 0.1%, and also lower by 0.3% compare to the production for the same time last year;

Crude oil imports has increased for the week of January 28th (4 week average) by 1.6% compare to the week of 21/1/2011, and by 7.6% compare to last year’s same time.

For the complete petroleum stocks, consumption and production review see here.

For further reading (in this site):

Previous issues of weekly report: